What is High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)?
Our comprehensive overview of what a HIIT workout really is and why it's so impactful.
The term ‘HIIT’ is thrown around a lot in the workout world, leaving some of us nodding our heads in agreement but remaining in the dark about what it really means.
HIIT is short for ‘high-intensity interval training’; an effective exercise that is proven to maximize your results and take less time than the average workout session. For example, a HIIT training session, although vigorous, can take only about 7 to 12 minutes, followed by some recovery exercises.
HIIT workouts are proven to promote muscle and enhance your body’s fat burning potential! Two main types of HIIT are ‘aerobic HIIT’ and ‘bodyweight HIIT,’ both of which are highly intensive forms of exercise. ‘Aerobic HIIT’ are things like spin-classes, track-based running and ‘bodyweight HIIT’ are exercises like Tabata, Crossfit and boot camp training.
You can enjoy the best of both by incorporating a mix of intense cardio drills with HIIT strength training exercises. A solid combination will give you a well-rounded workout; while HIIT cardio training burns calories, the muscle you gain from HIIT strength training keeps the fire burning all day long.
Health benefits to HIIT
Your body is constantly adapting to the movements and exercises you do on a regular basis. This means that in order to avoid a fitness plateau, you have to keep challenging yourself in your workouts, in other words, always upping the ante! Increasing the demand on your body during workouts will also enhance your general athletic performance and give you more health benefits too. High-intensity interval training can:
- Give you better endurance and stamina
- Increase your metabolism and muscle mass
- Improve your cardiovascular health
- Help you reach your goals and lose weight faster!
Guidelines to HIIT
For it to be considered a HIIT workout, the intensity of the workout must reach 60% of your maximum heart rate. In other words, you have to push yourself to the max every time! Here are some main tips to keep in mind when you’re creating or doing a HIIT workout.
- A HIIT workout should be about 20-45 minutes of hard work with intermittent rest periods, for example a Tabata workout is 20 seconds on and 10 seconds off. The total time can be shorter but still effective, although if it’s the only exercise you are doing, then you should make sure each of your sessions are adequate.
- Do these HIIT sessions 3-4 times per week for the best results.
- For an aerobic HIIT workout on the treadmill, try to do a 10 minute jog warm up, followed by 4 minutes fast and 4 minutes slow (walk and recover). Repeat 4 times, for a total of 16 minutes.
Seven’s HIIT workouts
Seven has a ton of high-intensity interval workouts to choose from and they all include both cardio and strength training for optimum results. One example of a classic HIIT workout in Seven is the Full Body workout with exercises for 30 seconds and Rest for 10 seconds.
HIIT workouts focus on various functional movements in a highly intensive way, challenging you to improve your fitness by building strength and adding to your normal conditioning.
Less time spent working out with more results! For those people who need more variety in their exercise routine, or just want faster results in the little time they have, HIIT workouts are perfect. So, why not try it out with Seven?